The purpose of the replication is so I can quickly restore backups in case the primary datacenter goes down in a disaster
Yes, I understand, but I meant to ask why don't you just replicate them to the DR without actually importing them? In case a disaster happened you would detach your primary VBR (no use of it since it's on the dead site) from EM and create a new repository of the folder where the replicated backups are stored. After that you would import them to the second VBR and use for restore. I agree that this is just a workaround, but it should work until we fix the limitation, unless I'm missing something.